AFL hopeful takes out Terang Gift
By KATE BUTLER
28 Nov, 2011
LAUCHLAN Dalgleish is among the hopefuls wanting to be picked up in next month’s AFL rookie draft but if he doesn’t get his wish, another sport will potentially benefit.
The multi-talented 18-year-old took out the 2011 Terang Gift yesterday, completing the 120-metre race in 12.25 seconds.
It marked his Terang Gift debut after he incredibly only took up athletics last year.
At the 2010 Stawell Gift, he won the Footballer’s Gift (120m), with his blistering performance catching the eye of Ararat athletics coach Marcus Cooper.
“He talked me into giving (running) a go,” Dalgleish said.
“I thought it would be good fun and it would help me develop my footy as well.”
Dalgleish featured in every TAC Cup match with the North Ballarat Rebels this year, playing on a wing. “I went to draft camp but I didn’t get picked up in the draft on Thursday night,” he said.
“Now I just have to wait for the rookie draft and see what happens.
“I’ve spoke to a couple of clubs but they haven’t really given too much away.”
Dalgleish — who finished in the top five of the 20m sprint, 30m repeat sprint, agility run and clean hands test at the AFL Draft Combine in October — said his football had benefited since taking up athletics.
“Definitely my speed and my run-and-carry with the ball,” he said.
“I’ve also got more power through my core.”
The Ararat resident’s speed was on display at Terang Recreation Reserve yesterday for the fifth annual gift meeting.
He claimed the blue winner’s sash ahead of Footscray’s Gus Carty-Cowling and Buninyong veteran Rod Mathews, who was aiming for back-to-back victories in the feature event.
Carty-Cowling and Dalgleish contested the same heat, finishing in that order.
“He just got me on the line,” Dalgleish said. “I was lucky that I didn’t draw him in the semi because I probably didn’t have to work as hard then (in my semi).”
Carty-Cowling was reasonably happy with his performance in the final.
“It was all right,” the runner-up said. “He just kicked off a bit and I couldn’t take him.”
Dalgleish pocketed $1200 for his efforts, which marked his first major event of this season.
He is coming to the end of a busy year after completing year 12 at Ararat College on top of his football and running commitments.
The teenager contested this year’s Stawell Gift, finishing a respectable third in a heat.